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  Metros   Delhi  03 May 2018  Kanpur, Delhi among worst polluted cities

Kanpur, Delhi among worst polluted cities

Published : May 3, 2018, 6:13 am IST
Updated : May 3, 2018, 6:13 am IST

According to the WHO data, nine out of 10 people in the world breathe air containing high levels of pollutants.

World Health Organisation
 World Health Organisation

New Delhi: Kanpur, Delhi and Faridabad were among the 14 Indian cities that figured in a list of 20 most polluted cities in the world in terms of PM 2.5 levels in 2016, according to data released by the World Health Organisation (WHO). The report was released on Wednesday.

While Kanpur topped the list, becoming the most polluted city among 4,300 world cities monitored in 2016, The remaining India cities apart from Kanpur and Delhi include Faridabad, Varanasi, Gaya, Patna, Delhi, Lucknow, Agra, Muzaffarpur, Srinagar, Gurgaon, Jaipur, Patiala, and Jodhpur.

The levels of Particulate Matter (PM) 2.5 for Kanpur were recorded at 173 ug/m3 (microgramme per cubic metre), followed by Faridabad at 172 ug/m3.

As per the data, Delhi's pollution levels improved only marginally between 2010 and 2014, but began to deteriorate after 2015. The annual average of the city's PM 2.5 was 143 ug/m3, more than three times the national standard, while the PM 10 average was 292 ug/m3, more than 4.5 times the standard.

According to the WHO data, nine out of 10 people in the world breathe air containing high levels of pollutants.

The PM 2.5, it may be noted  contains small particles, having a diameter of 2.5 micrometre and are capable of entering human lung and blood tissues through a person's nose and throat. Also it can cause chronic diseases such as asthma, heart attack, bronchitis etc.

Commenting on the report, Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) said real-time air quality monitoring, especially PM 2.5, will have to be expanded significantly to assess air quality in all Indian cities.

Out of more than 5,000 cities and towns in the country, monitoring is presently being done in 307 cities;  moreover, most of it is manual monitoring that reports data with a considerable time lag.   

“The WHO report is a warning about the serious and run-away pollution and public health emergency that confronts us today,” Sunita Narain, director general, CSE said. It is a grim reminder that air pollution has become a national crisis crisis. Intervention is needed to implement National Clean Air Action Plan with a compliance strategy to meet the clean air standards in all cities,” A. Roychowdhury, executive director, CSE said

Tags: world health organisation, delhi's pollution, centre for science and environment